**This post is sponsored by AKA Photography to bring you this experience. All opinions are 100% our own!**
It’s that time of year again! The mad scramble to get decent family photos before the holiday cards come out. I loathe taking family photos. No matter what time we take pictures or where we go, we always have one cranky kid who won’t smile or one person who can’t keep their eyes open (as I slowly side-eye my husband.) This year we tried a family session with AKA Photography to see what luck we’d have. I have to tell you, it far exceeded my expectations. It was actually kind of fun!
It started out like a typical session. I carefully coordinated colors and outfits, which I am terrible at, and then got us all to the shoot location with ten minutes to spare. Right when we got out of the van, my kids started boo-hooing about taking family photos while I was negotiating with them to behave. YAY! That makes for great Chandler Bing-type smiles and awkward postures. Then Amy Abney, our photographer, met up with us in the early evening with her wagon of tricks in tow. Amy was interested in our goals for the session and I explained if I got us all not blinking and smiling, I’d be happy, but that a nice holiday photo would be great so we could send it out.
My boys immediately picked up on her funny personality and laid-back attitude. We walked around the site location and casually took photos. Amy was so personable with my twin boys, she got them talking about their interests and encouraged moving around. Often I feel like we have this heavily orchestrated pose, with everyone being super still so we can get in one good photo where we look “natural.” AKA Photography seemed to have a goal of capturing a sweeet moment with the family and not posing people to simply look like they are having fun. We were actually giggling and having a good time. I love this pose where we were genuinely cuddling on a bench. A sweet moment of a mom with her little boys.
Our experience with AKA Photography was a game-changer. I asked my kids what they thought of the session and if they had a good time taking photos with mom and dad. My seven-year-old shared that Amy was “the best photographer EVER” and really enjoyed himself. Let’s be honest, if you aren’t having fun, you aren’t going to get a natural smile or great images. And children don’t tend to lie, or even cooperate in a pinch. I particularly love the use of natural settings and clever use of light in our final images. Amy was sometimes so fast in the moment, I was sure we didn’t have a decent photo prospect because I thought my kids may be wiggly. But I am pleased to give everyone a sneak-peek at our family holiday pic, which I absolutely adore. No stiff seated pose, but a fun moment where we were in a cuddly pile in the park. Right at this moment, we were talking about David Bowie in Labyrinth (which my boys love) and had been tossing a ball in the air.
Amy was so wonderful to provide us with an almost immediate peek at our photos before we even made it home. Seriously. No two-week waiting period, wondering if we had a decent pic or if I needed a back-up plan. We had wonderful examples of brilliant captures with no editing. I dislike it when a photographer edits out my boys’ freckles or post-processes us so heavily, we don’t look like our normal selves. I like clear, crisp images where I can remember every detail of my kids and this moment in our lives after they grow up. Here is an example of our raw image from AKA Photography:
AKA Photography is filling up fast for the holiday season, but still has several family sessions and mini-sessions available in the next few months. Mini-sessions are being shot at Addison Circle and at a gorgeous North Dallas park/field. Go check out some of the brilliant Dallas Arboretum pumpkin photos on Facebook or visit their website.
Amy specializes in lifestyle photos and offers a variety of options, no matter what the event or the stage of life you are in. I am looking forward to the next round of photos with my kids and now I can get them out the door faster now that they know AKA Photography and what they can expect during the shoot. Schedule your family photos today. You will be so pleased!